Is it a crime to say that I’m glad it’s Monday? After a crazy, long weekend it feels good to get back into our routine and head into the week.
On Friday, I was texting back and forth with a friend when I asked if she was having a productive day. She listed off what she had done and then asked me the same. My answer was two things: I ran 12 miles and made a loaf of whole wheat bread. Now, you might be thinking it was the 12 miles that seemed like the big deal of the day, but it wasn’t. It was making the loaf of bread. You see, if I were a superhero, baking bread would be my nemesis. Our history together is a tale of tragic encounters. Yeast always winning out. That is, until I tried Mark Bittman’s recipe for this week’s ‘Food Matters Project.’
Let me tell you friends, victory was sweet. Removing the loaf of bread from the oven I was washed in the beautiful aroma of baked bread. The loaf was soft, with the nutty taste that a good whole wheat will give you. I could barely get pictures taken as my boys hovered nearby, waiting for a slice. They devoured it with some freshly made butter and jam spread on top.
So, if you haven’t been successful in the past with making bread, give this recipe a try. If I can pull it off, I know you can too. To help you out, here a few of tips I’ve learned from friends over the years, in their attempts to help me overcome my bread baking nemesis.
–Make sure your yeast isn’t expired, check the date on your yeast packet.
–When a recipe calls for mixing the yeast with warm water, don’t make it too warm or you’ll kill the yeast (this one was a big one for me).
–Make sure you set your dough in a warm place to help it rise. I’ve been sitting mine in the sunny spot of the kitchen in the morning. I’ve also turned on the oven, let it heat up, then turned it off and set the dough inside to rise.
To see all the variations on this week’s ‘Food Matters Project’ click, here. To get the original recipe go over to Melissa’s beautiful blog, ‘the faux martha’. Be sure to look around at her other posts, she has some great recipes as well as her ‘Tip of the Week’ on Fridays.